Wednesday, 28 August 2019

Home Truths by Susan Lewis


How far would you go to keep your family safe?

Angie Watt's used to have everything. A new home. A beloved husband. Three adorable children.

But Angie's happy life is shattered when her son Liam falls in with the wrong crowd. And after son's bad choices lead to the murder of her husband, it's up to Angie to hold what's left of her family together. 

Her son is missing. Her daughter is looking for help in dangerous places. And Angie is fighting just to keep a roof over their heads. 

But Angie is a mother. And a mother does anything to protect her children - even when the world is falling apart...

If home is where the heart is, what happens when it breaks?

Author: Susan Lewis
Publication Date: 22 August 2019
Publisher: Harper Collins

My Review

I have read a lot of Susan's previous books and knew I was in for a treat.  As with some books from other authors I have previously enjoyed, I have sometimes been left a little disappointed, but thankfully I have never been let down by this author. I saved this as a holiday read and loved, loved, loved it.

The book really struck a chord as being a single parent myself living on the edge of a council estate I know how easy it can be to make ends meet.  I thank god that my situation is no where near as bad as the character, Angie.

The thing I love about Susan's writing is that the characters are true to life.  I could almost imagine myself chatting to Angie at the school gates.  These are characters that are put into real life situations and manage to find the light at the end of the tunnel. The book covers a lot of hard hitting issue including gangs, drugs and on line grooming.  Sadly all issues that are now to much apart of life.

We start the story with Steve finding his five year old son playing with a syringe he's found in the living room.  He storms off onto the estate in the hunt for his older son Liam. A short time later his battered body is found, leaving Angie a widow and having to rely on benefits. It's not long before her debts are spiralling out of control. Not only has she lost her husband Steve, but her eldest son, Liam has gone on the run.  In a fit of rage she told him she was dead to him.

Angie's job at Hill House is to support vulnerable people, people who have mental health issues, people who have found them selves living on the streets.  Everybody loves her.  She's always there to help whenever she can but soon Angie will need more help then she ever imagined. She is still grieving for her husband and trying to find Liam but Angie's life is spiralling out of control and she is losing the house from over her head.

Angie's daughter, thirteen year old Grace is desperate to help her mum financially so when she advertises on the Internet for part time work she is unaware of the danger that she's placing herself in. Liam had been sucked into a gang on the estate. Could Grace be about to find herself going down a slippery slope?

Angie finds herself at her lowest when the kids go to live with her sister and she has to sleep in her van.  Everything she has worked and lived for has gone. She has no where left to turn.  Then a chance meeting with Steve's old friend starts to turn her life around.

I couldn't read this book quickly enough and flew through the pages.  It was hard hitting and so close to reality. Just the type of story that I love to read with lots of flawed characters.  I hear stories similar to these at the school gates and always pray for the happy after.

Although these are fictional characters it's a sad fact that the situation they find themselves in is so true to life. More and more I am hearing about people that are unable to feed their family through no fault of their own.  This book revealed to me that although I sometimes find money a stretch some months, I thank god that I am not in the situation of Angie and the situation that so many other people find them selves in. I am one of the lucky ones.

The story line was a little predictable but that is the one thing that I love about this author.  Life is also predictable. All I can say is I loved it from page one until the very end.

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